Gov. Dannel P. Malloy is advising Connecticut residents who are generously considering providing monetary donations to nonprofit organizations that are assisting with Hurricane Harvey response and recovery in the Texas area to take several steps of precaution in order to ensure that their charitable giving is being used in accordance with the intent in which it was given.
“Past experience has taught us that the best way we can help survivors in a disaster, particularly in the first days, is to donate funds to trusted charitable organizations that are often on the frontlines working in close partnership with first responders,” Governor Malloy said. “These funds will help those in need as the Houston region begins to recover. We are grateful to these organizations and to the first responders for all the direct assistance they are providing to the people impacted by this storm.”
“Connecticut knows first-hand how important assistance and resources are during storm recovery,” Lt. Governor Nancy Wyman said. “I urge residents to donate through these trusted sources so help gets to the people who need it the most.”
Catastrophic situations can unfortunately be opportunities for fraud. Scam charities often solicit funds via email, telephone, and even pop-up ads on social media. It is always important to do research on a charity before giving by visiting the organization’s website, calling to ask questions, and making sure they have the appropriate credentials in the states they operate. Consumers are encouraged to donate to organizations they are familiar with in order to ensure their money is going to the best place possible.
“We urge everyone to remain vigilant when responding to requests to assist flood victims in Texas and Louisiana,” Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection Commissioner Dora Schriro said. “Donors should exercise caution when responding to any email with a subject line, attachment, or hyperlink related to Hurricane Harvey, even if it appears to originate from a trusted source.”
Donors considering giving to those in need are encouraged to take the following precautions before transmitting funds:
- Use caution when opening email attachments.
- Do not log onto an unsolicited web link.
- Keep antivirus and other computer software on your computer up-to-date.
- Verify the authenticity of any email solicitation by contacting the organization directly through a bona fide contact number; the BBB National Charity Report Index is an excellent resource.
The following is a list of some of the reputable organizations currently accepting donations for Hurricane Harvey. Please note that this is not an exhaustive list of all charitable organizations providing assistance to those impacted by the storm:
- Online: http://redcross.org
- Call: 1-800-RED CROSS
- Text: HARVEY to 90999 to make a $10 donation
- Online: http://www.americares.org
- Call: 1-800-486‑HELP
United Way Houston
- Online: http://www.unitedwayhouston.org/flood
- Text: UWFLOOD to 41444
Food Banks in Hurricane Harvey-Impacted Areas
- Houston Food Bank: www.houstonfoodbank.org
- Galveston Food Bank: www.galvestoncountyfoodbank.org
- Food Bank of the Golden Crescent (Victoria): www.victoriafoodbank.org
- Corpus Christi Food Bank: www.foodbankcc.com
- Southeast Texas Food Bank (Beaumont): www.setxfoodbank.org
- Food Bank of the Rio Grande Valley (Pharr): www.foodbankrgv.com
- Brazos Valley Food Bank (Bryan): www.bvfb.org
- Central Texas Food Bank (Austin): www.centraltexasfoodbank.org
- San Antonio Food Bank: www.safoodbank.org
Additionally, a listing of organizations that have been vetted by FEMA can be found here.